NRC: Thousands asked to appear in 24 hours despite long distance

Assam: As the Central government scrapes Article 370 from Jammu and Kashmir, dividing the state, by employing a presidential decree, simultaneously the government issued notices to thousands of people in Assam to appear before designated authorities in the next 24 hours on Sunday.

Thousands of people across Assam received re-verification notices on Saturday asking them to appear before the designated authorities, some outside their home districts in the next 24 hours as against the earlier 15 day period, officials and recipients of the notices, HT reports.

Additional deputy commissioner, Dorthy Suichang, Kamrup district where about 25,000 notices have been issued, said, “The hearings are part of mopping up exercise.”

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Meanwhile, Aditi Gogoi, Circle Officer of Chamaria in Kamrup district, said the notices have been issued as directed by National Register of Citizens (NRC) office.

“We just printed notices as they came to us from the state coordinator’s office,” she said.

However, the State NRC coordinator Prateek Hajela did not respond to phone calls about the latest re-verification exercise.

Recipients who have no means of commute express their disapproval over the notice. Basir Ali (29), a resident of Jorhat district of upper Assam, recipient of notice, said he has been asked to reach Sontali in Kamrup district about 350 kms away in the next 24 hours.

“There is no vehicle, no bus, and I have no money. I don’t understand why I have been called so a far away on such a short notice?” asked Ali, a small farmer.

The notice mentions the recipient should carry documents to establish his residence in Assam prior to March 25,1971, the cut-off date under NRC rules, and at least one member of his family should be present with him.

Another recipient from Majortop village in Goroimari, 58-year-old Ujufa Begum, had been asked to come to Moranhat in Dibrugarh which is 450 kilometres by 11 am on Monday which she says can not cover in the next 24 hours.

Officials in various districts said they have been informed about the massive re-verification exercise. “We are prepared,” said a senior district official in Sivasagar, who was not willing to be quoted.

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